Because the stop to Google Analytics will raise costs for businesses. Aicel's alarm by Chiara Rossi

For the Italian association of e-commerce companies: "The stop of Google Analytics brings companies back to a level of approximation fixed ten years ago" The stop to Google Analytics is an earthquake for Italian companies online. Last week the Italian Privacy Guarantor found that the use of the analysis tool for the results of Google's websites by a local web publisher does not comply with EU data protection rules [Gdpr] due to the transfer of user data to the United States. The latter country "lacks an adequate level of protection", underlines the Guarantor in the press note. Google Analytics is the web analytics tool provided by Google to website operators that allows the latter to analyze detailed statistics on users in order to optimize the services rendered and to monitor their marketing campaigns. "For many Italian companies with websites and for the entire online advertising system, which had reached a high level of sophistication in recent years, the stop of Google Analytics brings companies back to a level of approximation that was still ten years ago" commented Manuela Borgese, vice president of Aicel (Italian Association of Electronic Commerce) and legal expert in privacy and new technologies. As stated on the website, Aicel (Italian Association of Electronic Commerce), is the only national association that represents those who work in e-commerce. The associates (over 1200 companies) are in fact merchants or 'shopkeepers' who offer their services and products online. "Not only that: the costs for promotional activities based on personalized content based on user preferences will be tripled following the decision of the Italian Privacy Guarantor" added the representative of Aicel. All the details. THE STOP OF THE PRIVACY GUARANTOR TO GOOGLE ANALYTICS The Privacy Guarantor has established that Caffeina that uses the Google Analytics service, without the guarantees provided for by the EU Regulation, violates the data protection legislation because it transfers to the United States, without adequate guarantees. But the measure does not exclusively concern Caffeine. The authority has in fact extended the call to all Italian website operators. THE CONSEQUENCES FOR BUSINESSES "The impossibility of using these tools, so fundamental for marketing policies, entails a series of serious consequences, technically unsustainable especially in a phase in which the economic sector is already strongly tested", says the lawyer. Manuela Borgese. According to Aicel President "For these purposes, the most sophisticated digital marketing tools are essential and strategic in an extremely extensive scenario, both geographically and with respect to the condensation of operators. Depriving traders of these tools translates into a competitive imbalance compared to those who, on the other hand, have such shortcuts". THE ISSUE OF DATA TRANSFER BETWEEN THE EU AND THE US The crackdown on Google Analytics comes following a series of complaints filed in August 2020 by the European privacy campaign group noyb, which targeted 101 websites with regional operators that it had identified as sending data to the U.S. via Google Analytics integrations and/or Facebook Connect always reports TechCrunch. The complaints follow the historic ruling of the EU Court of Justice in July 2020, which invalidated the agreement on the transfer of data between the EU and the United States known as the Privacy Shield. THE REPLACEMENT FOR THE PRIVACY SHIELD IS COMING SOON Since then, both sides of the Atlantic have been negotiating a replacement for the Privacy Shield. On March 25, Presidents Joe Biden and Ursula Von Der Leyen signed a preliminary agreement between the US and the EU on the transfer and processing of personal data. However, the legal details of the envisaged framework for data transfer have yet to be finalised before it comes into force. This means that the use of US-based cloud services remains shrouded in legal risk for EU customers. Therefore, pending the new agreement, the Italian Privacy Guarantor "invites all data controllers to verify the compliance of the methods of use of cookies and other tracking tools used on its websites, with particular attention to Google Analytics and other similar services, with the legislation on the protection of personal data". THE NEW US-EU TRANSATLANTIC AGREEMENT MUST BE ADOPTED "So today the solution can only and exclusively be of a political nature. In order to avoid the risks reported and to unlock the operations of suppliers, given the absence of alternatives, it is essential that the procedures for adopting the already announced new US-EU transatlantic agreement for the protection of personal data are facilitated", concludes Borgese.